Recycled Candles to Bring on the Light


February is for fire and light. I’m choosing to ignore the snowstorms blanketing the northern bits of the US, the icy roads slicking the Midwest, the zillion layers I wore the last time I left the house, the frigid behavior of certain people, and choosing to focus on the blazing glow of 2013’s second month.

On “A Fat Candle for Old Man Winter…,” I shared a cleansing brew because I wasn’t in the mood to make candles. Well, today, I feel like shining so I’m embracing the sparkle of good old wax and wick; emphasis on the good and old.
Few things are as uplifting as the flame and scent of a sweet candle, don’t you think? These pretties, for instance, are made even more attractive (at least to my heart’s eyes) by the fact that the wax, the wick, and everything I used to make them was recycled or repurposed.

Used coffee filters, kitchen shears, a few pennies, a pencil, and *cough, cough* an empty wee Dulce de Leche container. I cut the coffee filter, round and round, into a long strip and twisted it to make the wick. The penny is there for weight and the pencil for stability, as you can see.

By means of an extremely sophisticated double boiling method *grin* I melted wax chunks. It is obvious that my tools are as chic as my methodology (an empty tomato can and an old pot). Once the old candle chunks melted, I poured the wax into readied containers.

Here they are… chilling… waiting to burn with delight (I doubled the wick for the thickest candle).

Some of you are probably wondering about the orange tea light, since I promised to share my orange candle holder making steps sometime back. It’s easy. After cleaning out an orange peel (go HERE to see how), I fit it around a small glass to keep the shape from collapsing. The second image shows what the peel looks like after 13 days (separate peel and glass for a few seconds each day to keep them from sticking). In the third image, you can see the completed container. I recycled the hardware from an old candle, and the wicks for all the candles in this post come from a recycled 5 cup coffee filter.

I love the color. This baby sits next to my stove. I love cooking by candle scent… um, light ;-)

A little fire and some orange peels can make a world of difference…
Particularly when trying to stay Creative Every Day ;-) 

46 comments:

  1. hi, Magaly! This is better now, loads of light and warmness.
    This is fabulous how you make candles! And seem really easy. I'm off to make them too. I have some leftover wax, and some scents..and no cents, sorry, here we have paisa (or rupee coin):)) I wonder if I can use anything else for wicks, as there are no coffee filters here *sigh*
    Have a bright day! Thanks for a witchy tutorial :)

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    1. You know, I was thinking about experimenting with teabags. I will try it and tell you how it went. I wonder if the material will burn too fast...

      Thanks for the brightness, and I'm sending it right back times 3 ;-)

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  2. Beautiful! I had no idea you could make wicks from coffee filters! Do you know how many of those I go through a week?! Haha!

    What gorgeous candles!

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    1. Why do you think I began crafting with orange peel and coffee filters? Jacob and I drink enough coffee for three families, and I eat more oranges than an entire commune!

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  3. That is pure genius. I always have a problem with my candles that the wicks are always crooked and they burn in a wrong way but the penny method is genius!
    I used to use premade wicks that are n't steady as the wax is poured onto them. Now i will do it this way.

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    1. And you can use the pennies over, and over, and over. I've never had specialized candle equipment. I like the fact that just a few things around the house work just fine ;-)

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  4. You know, last night i dreamt that my horrible uncle was back, sitting in our kitchen table talking about my baby and it was weirdly scary-nightmarish! So i went back to see your comment and the word parasite really struck a nerve! So many hours later i still can't shake this feeling off!!

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    1. Poor baby! I hope you set up a dream catching and a stay away sign. All joke aside, isn't it horrible how they show up even after you think they are long gone? *sigh*

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  5. I can feel the warmth! Thanks for sharing the process.
    Hugging you
    SurAnn

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    1. Glad you feel the warming fire. I was fun to put together ;-)

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  6. Lovely and Crafty! I was recently given a wonderful sharp cheddar cheese wrapped in black wax. The wax made a wonderful little black candle. I love the orange candle. I will try this with limes, since our tree looks set to have a bumper crop this year. So glad you could feel the light and love and warmth that all your wicked darlings sent to you. I love the cohesion that has evolved in the group of Earthy People who dance around you, and the way we all respect one another. Thank you, Magaly.

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    1. I might try some lime, too. I've never done it. Thinking about the color alone makes me smile.

      Yay! Black candles. And cheese, yummy cheese ;-)

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  7. I really like your penny-and-coffee-filter-wicks method! Beautiful candles -- enjoy them!

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    1. "penny-and-coffee-filter-wicks-method!" I might have to coin that lol

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  8. I always wanted to make candles but held back because I didn't have the right "tools", silly me. I will be making some candles as soon as possible, sometime next year. lol, Love your blog.

    FYI, had to delete last comment, typo, I hate tupo's.

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    1. With crafting and witchery, I always keep it simple and fun. I always find that if you look around the house, you'll see exactly what you need or at least something that would do the job.

      Typos are evil.

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  9. Great candles! Dulce con Leche candles? :)

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    1. Funny thing, after the different colors of wax were mixed, they actually looked like Dulce de Leche lol

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  10. I am so excited to see your methodology when it comes to candle making. I haven't made my own candles in some time....you make me wanna. Clever use of so many items. Saving Gaia from unwanted stuff. I love it. Oma Linda

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    1. I used to make candles twice a year. This is my first time making them in the last two years and because I ran out. I'm glad I did. I bet you'll be, too, when you make then. Better show and tell ;-)

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  11. Beautiful and I am so impressed! A nice touch to the month of February, adding a little light and warmth.

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    1. We need to keep February hot, don't we? Making candles always makes me bright and giggly. I enjoy the heat, the fact that I have to be patient, the repetition... light and warmth indeed ;-)

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  12. Fascinating post on candle making ~ very informative, lots of work and beautiful!

    Carol of (A Creative Harbor) on blogger ^_^

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    1. "lots of work?" Really? It didn't feel like it. Maybe because I enjoy it so much... or because I was listening to a lovely book while I was melting and waxing ;-)

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  13. Penny weight & filter wicks...cool!

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    1. "Penny weight & filter wicks..." sounds like the title of a story. I might have to write it. I wonder what genre... ;-)

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  14. This is awesome. I'll have to remember the coffee filters particularly. (Though since we don't use coffee filters, that wouldn't be re-purposing anything...). I've tried to make candles before, but I don't think I quite knew what I was doing.

    I can't wait to hear about your writing lair. :)

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    1. If you use something else for the wick, do share. I will try teabags and other things I use around the house. Just to experiment. I will share the results.

      Writing lair pics... soon ;-)

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    2. Tea bags! I actually DO drink tea. I can try those. :)

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    3. ...not to say that I don't drink coffee. I love the stuff. But we use a Senseo brewer, which doesn't need the filters. And the pods may be too small to be turned into wicks.

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  15. Magaly, you are one smart, recycling witch!!! I love these candles!!

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    1. So many good titles in this post's comments. "One Smart, Recycling Witch" sounds like a great crafting book ;-)

      I'm loving the candles, too. I'm burning one and they smell like paradise (and the vanilla I added to the wax ;-)

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  16. You're making me miss my candle making supplies. Unfortunately there was not enough room to add them to my pile of crap to take with me when I moved to Ohio. I love your re-purposed candles. :)

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    1. Oh missing the things we leave behind... I left a lot of books, and a plant or three, I miss them two. Maybe you can get a bit when you go back to visit. Or you'll replace them with some disposable things ;-)

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  17. They are beautiful! Should try that, I have got several dozens of old candles at home. Could even make layered rainbow candles, I am sure. ^^

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    1. Layered candles are the best. I made some two years ago, and loved them. Do show and tale if you make some ;-)

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  18. Replies
    1. Crafty, witch and awesome ;-)

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    2. The awesome was implied =p

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    3. I bet it was hiding right behind the modesty lol

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  19. Oh I L♥Ve making candles, isn't it fun?! I like using the old waxed paper milk cartons when you could still find them. Never thought of using a penny for a weight though, what a great idea!
    Can't wait to see the big unveiling!
    ♥Sharon

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    1. Making candles is relaxing and rewarding. Looking at the melting wax, enjoying the scent, seeing the fire burn in a control flame... lovely ;-)

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  20. I've wanted to experiment with candles but didn't think I had the equipment, I didn't want to ruin my pots and pans. They are the most expensive thing I own - lol. Duh, get an old pot from a thrift store, and I go thru tons of cans. Perfect! :) Usually I just recycle the cans. Thanks! We drink our fair share of coffee too. I bet tea bags would work.

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    1. Simple does it every time. I found that yellow pot in a mess of things, which I'm sure came from one of the prior owners. I thought that the yellow gave it an extra bit of fire ;-)

      Let me know if you try teabags for wicks. I will try them in the future, but would love to know if you try them first.

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  21. I love your candles. My mom used to do the same thing when I was a kid. She swears she isn't a Witch but she's starting to question herself when it comes to me and my sister and our Witchy ways (although my sister swears she isn't a Witch either, just special) lol. I never thought to use coffee filters as wicks though. I think I need to try that one out!

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    1. My dad spends a lot of time brewing potions, lighting candles and offering things to saints, but he is not a Witch either, he is "just looking for a little luck." lol

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